There are certain things you can do to
feel better or to reduce the side effects of your treatment for
thyroid cancer. Healthy habits such as eating a balanced diet and getting enough sleep and exercise may help control your symptoms. If you have chemotherapy, your doctor may also give you medicines to control and prevent nausea and vomiting.
You can try home treatments:
- For nausea or vomiting, such as ginger or peppermint tea, gum, or candy.
- For feeling very tired. If you lack energy or become weak easily, try to manage your energy and get extra rest. You may feel most tired
at the end of treatment or just after treatment is completed.
- For a dry mouth. Take frequent sips of water throughout the day. Sugar-free gum or sugar-free hard candy will help keep your mouth moist without promoting tooth decay. Tart liquids and foods, such as lemonade or dill pickles, may help stimulate the flow of saliva. There are also saliva substitutes that you can buy at a drug store.
- For hair loss. If you need high doses of
radioactive iodine treatment, you may have some hair loss, but it is usually
very mild. And you may be the only one who notices it.
Handling the stress of having cancer
Having cancer can be very stressful, and it may feel overwhelming to face the challenges in front of you. Finding new ways of coping with the symptoms of stress may improve your overall quality of life. These ideas may help:
- Get the support you need. Spend time with people who care about you, and let them help you.
- Take good care of yourself. Get plenty of rest, and eat nourishing foods.
- Talk about your feelings. Find a support group where you can share your experience.
- Stay positive. Do things each day that will help you stay calm and relaxed.
Having cancer can change your life in many ways. For support in managing these changes, see the topic
Getting Support When You Have Cancer.
E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Matthew I. Kim, MD - Endocrinology
July 27, 2011
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